Twitpocalypse Now: Dealing with "The Change"

Matt Patenaude

By now, most of you have probably heard of it, or at the very least felt the effects of it.

It's called the Twitpocalypse, and it's the result of a lot of bad planning on the part of Twitter, and a lot of ignorance on the part of third-party Twitter client developers (like myself). Essentially, there is a "magic number" that represents the largest 32-bit signed integer. We have now exceeded that many tweets on Twitter, so in order to deal with it, we had to move to a larger container type. Twitter did that fine on the backend (now using a 64-bit BIGINT), but many Twitter clients have not, meaning that they either just stop working, or in some cases, even crash. Particularly unfortunate is that MGTwitterEngine, which a number of Twitter clients use, uses the 32-bit signed integer as its container type, and has yet to be updated (to my knowledge — I'll try getting in touch with Matt later today).

What are we going to do?

There's really only one thing to do: fix it.

I'm going to spend the next week or so trying to get the Twitpocalypse bugs ironed out. Throughout that process, I'll go through and disable any unfinished or not working features of Bluebird Beta 2, so we've got a stable and usable product. And then I'll release it.

Yes folks, our solution to the Twitpocalypse is finally releasing Bluebird beta 2, albeit with a few less features that won't be ready until beta 3, or the final release, or whatever comes next. ;) I suppose every cloud does have a silver lining.